Here's my dilemma... in the last year or so I started to get bouts of vertigo and generally just feel off-balance. It can last for hours or weeks. I've noticed that it gets bad when the weather is changing, and sometimes I get ear pain as well. Certain sounds feel like they are punching in my ears; high pitch sounds like my youngest child's voice are piercing, and low sounds like the AC fan feel like throbbing in my head. I just want to get away and bury my head under a pillow, but this makes me miss out on things I love. It is even worse when I have allergies or a head cold. The problem is that the feeling of vertigo can cause major anxiety for me and I can't seem to shake it. Every time I feel like I'm falling over I get super anxious, and this can go on for a long time.
Lately I've been thinking that my anxiety causes me to clench my jaws tightly, especially while I sleep, and this might be causing pressure on my inner ear/Eustachian tubes, making my ear fluid do weird things and causing (or at least exacerbating) my vertigo and ear issues. Weather systems seem to make it bad, especially when they are preceded by high winds, and I think this is related to the pressure imbalance in my ears. It's gotten so that if I see clouds on the horizon I just go back to bed.
On the other hand, I also know that anxiety itself can sometimes directly make me feel dizzy, so I have a hard time discerning whether I'm feeling dizzy because I'm anxious, or anxious because I'm dizzy, or both. How do you know whether the chicken or the egg comes first? How do you even start to treat something when you don't know where the cycle begins? Even if I somehow manage to get all the other anxiety symptoms under control, I still feel dizzy, sometimes for quite a while, and so the anxiety just returns. The ear/nose/throat doctor thinks my anxiety is a big part of it and gave me some simple exercises to help, but they haven't done any good at all. And frankly I can't afford any more visits to him even if I thought he could help.